The Church That Cares

“But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first” (Revelation 2:4).

Throughout the ages, churches have struggled with maintaining their fervor for the Lord. They sometimes get caught up in controversies that have little or no meaning as it relates to life. Sometimes they develop internal conflicts that divide the church. Some churches coast at a comfortable pace, and eventually just go through the motions. But God has something different in mind for His people.

Three wrong approaches to people

1. Condemn them.
While faithful ambassadors of Christ will remind people of the dangers of ignoring their souls, they do not condemn their hearers. But some Christians suppose that God has entrusted them with a ministry of condemnation. Our mission brings a far greater message than condemnation: we bring hope to the world.

2. Ignore them.
Many, if not most, Christians choose this course. But when we ignore the spiritual needs of others, we cannot possibly help them. While no Christian can help everyone, we can help some. Let’s ask God for open doors to speak with people.

3. Accept them as they are.
While this approach may seem to some an act of love, it does not help them at all. The lost are really lost. Perhaps we need to know that as much as the lost. No one finds acceptance with God apart from Christ. People need Christ, and Christ will change them from the inside out.

One right approach

The correct way to view people comes from a verse spoken by our Lord:

“For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost” (Luke 19:10).

Jesus still seeks them. Notice He does the saving, and He also seeks them. He seeks them through the Holy Spirit working through the lives of His children sent by Him. Let us live our lives before the world in such a way that we shine our lights. Let us pray for the lost and look for ways to reach them.

When churches catch fire for God, they begin to care for people in a new and fresh way. May God light a flame in our hearts to see people as He sees them.

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